|Year : 2013 | Volume
| Issue : 1 | Page : 3
Research in maxillofacial surgery
Director, Balaji Dental and Craniofacial Hospital, 30, KB Dasan Road, Teynampet, Chennai - 600 018, India
|Date of Web Publication||4-Apr-2013|
S M Balaji
Director, Balaji Dental and Craniofacial Hospital, 30, KB Dasan Road, Teynampet, Chennai - 600 018
|How to cite this article:|
Balaji S M. Research in maxillofacial surgery. Ann Maxillofac Surg 2013;3:3
The academic and clinical pursuit of Maxillofacial Surgeons always has been to improve the practice of oral and maxillofacial surgery (OMFS) by utilizing evidences that leads to enhanced clinical decision making and better outcomes. Thus, it enables the clinical outcomes as a culmination of knowledge that such results can be accurately predicted. This culmination and charter into unknown areas is the basis of research.
For maxillofacial surgeons, especially from limited resource settings, it always had been very tough to integrate research in clinical practice. In my personal experience as a PhD student in the University, I have faced this problem. In my course of research, I have observed surgeons having a scientific research rigor employ clinical examination, diagnostic aids, and basic medical condition to assess risks and outcomes associated with several variables that comprise patient care. They use a comprehensive, focused research to identify, discover compelling evidence that would change the maxillofacial care delivery. Such innovations, ideas and the decision to intervene often include a thorough understanding of the patient's physiology, anatomy, risks as well as complications inherent to the procedure. Because such contributing variables often are complex and interrelated, it takes scientific approach and appropriate research methodology to sort out the role that each variable plays in the patient's projected outcome.
Hence, it is essential that Indian OMFS adhere to two basic tenants of research-documentation and methodology. Importance of appropriate and adequate documentation has been repeatedly stressed for Indian settings. With high work demands and limited resource settings, documentation is often compromised. This vital procedural lapse often is the reason behind the inability to conduct research including audits, retrospective analysis, case control studies, etc., The Indian OMFS in the era of information and communication technology can use advanced aids to minimize the documentation.
The next major hurdle is the adequate knowledge of research methodology. Though it forms a part of the syllabus in OMFS post graduation, proper emphasis or training is not given in practical aspect. Case reports still account to one third of OMFS literature. It has been stressed that such case reports contribute very poorly to citations and leads to poor performance of journals.  Stress has been made on original research with an intention to seek an answer for a valid research question rather than to convert a dissertation or a thesis to a paper. 
There are a lot of unsolved questions in routine practice of OMFS. All fraternity members need to observe, question themselves, and try to seek answer for their questions in an ethical way. Such an endeavor will bring in more original research from our country. In doing so, the knowledge and frontiers of OMFS shall be much benefitted.
| References|| |
|1.||Nabil S, Samman N. The impact of case reports in oral and maxillofacial surgery. Int J Oral Maxillofac Surg 2012;41:789-96. |
|2.||Balaji SM. 25 years of Indian dental research and future directions. Indian J Dent Res 2012;23:299-300. |
| Authors|| |
S. M. Balaji